|Memoriam by Idiom Alpha|
An engineer finds himself in a stranger's body - one that happens to be female.
|This article contains spoilers! You were warned.|
The main protagonist of this quest. Chief engineer aboard the good ship Torellia. He wakes up in someone else's body with somebody else's mistakes to fix.
The "artificial intelligence" of the Torellia. Artificial intelligences are instances of uploaded human minds that have 'forked' from their original copy or no longer have a body to return to. They have strict behavior limitation protocols installed to prevent them from going rogue. Mnemosyne's former identity is a librarian named Joanne Wilcox.
The owner of the body the protagonist is in. Recently graduated from medical school, ironically a dying profession thanks to advancements in resurrection technology. Currently occupying Keith Kennings' body.
The girl Ophidian left behind for his dream job. Runs a detective agency on Earth. May or may not be getting her own followup quest.
The body the owner of our body is in. A chef. Shares a likeness with Catherine, for obvious reasons.
The engineer that woke Ophidian up to fix this mess when she couldn't. Not as good at messing with brain uploads as she thought she was.
Jackie and George
Two scientists who built a mobile body for Mnemosyne. Quite terrified the AI trying to save them is instead going to kill them.
Zoe and Selkie
Ophidian's technophile sister and her robot girlfriend. Still living on Earth and getting up to no good.
The primary setting of the quest. A 'colony' ship carrying new settlers to Mars, keeping their minds stored on digital backups while their bodies undergo stasis.
Our hero(ine) awakens in a resurrection pod with a splitting headache. Cursing his underlings' reckless behavior, he learns he was awoken by his coworker Jo to deal with a critical failure in a server room storing the minds of every colonist aboard. All the backups except this one have failed due to a radiation leak. The first obstacle he faces is getting to the server room to fix things when the shipboard systems don't recognize his proper clearance level. After a trip down the garbage chute going nowhere pleasant, Ophidian tries embracing his current identity as a medical doctor to get through on the basis of a medical emergency. He would have gotten away with it too, if it weren't for the real Catherine's meddling. Oh, and a conveniently timed brain aneurysm.
When he comes to again, Ophidian is undergoing prep for brain surgery to correct the issues from his download into the wrong body. Once his life is no longer in danger, Catherine and Ophidian both head to the irradiated zone to look for survivors. They stumble across another copy of Ophidian in Jo's body, half dead of radiation poisoning and brain damage. They drag her to safety, and she manages to fill them in on current events: An asteroid collided with the ship and lodged itself in one of the server rooms, corrupting all but one of the backups for the colonists' minds. Over half of the crew who were awake have succumbed to radiation poisoning thanks to the insufficient protection of their safe-suits during damage control efforts. If they don't act soon, the corrupt data from the majority of the servers will overwrite the data on the remaining server, effectively killing over four hundred colonists - due to a system Ophidian personally designed. Even worse, if the radioactive fragment is still lodged in the ship when it lands on Mars, countless more people will be exposed to radiation. The final cherry on top of Ophidian's no good very bad day is that in less than two hours, his original body will have been dead too long to resuscitate.
Ophidian's first plan of action is to get in contact with the remaining two survivors, Jackie and George, in the robotics lab to find a radiation-proof drone and remotely disconnect the remaining server from the network. Most of their robots are not especially rad-resistant, but they happen to have one high-quality unit - an android body custom built for Mnemosyne. The problem is, it can only be piloted by a specially modified uploaded mind, and Jo was the only one with that kind of expertise. Mnemosyne could handle the task, but her behavioral safeguards prevent her. Jackie and George panic at the thought of an unshackled AI, but given the lack of alternatives Ophidian decides to override her safeties. Mnemosyne is grateful for the new mobility and freedom, but they still have a problem in that Mnemosyne isn't trained to safely de-sync the server. Mnemosyne offers Ophidian one last option - she can modify him to pilot the android body himself. With the clock ticking, he reluctantly agrees.
Ophidian wakes up yet again in an unfamiliar body, with entirely new artificial senses. After more than a few moments of awkwardness, he acclimates to his metal tits and reaches server room ten - only to find it's behind a flooded hallway acting as a radiation shield. More precious minutes are spent draining the hall, and modifying a safe suit for android use, as it's better than nothing. Finally, he makes it into the server room, confronted by his now unrecoverable body. After completing the desync, he asks for some time alone, and Mnemosyne takes over the android for the finishing touches and destroying the radiation source. Ophidian takes one last stroll in Kat's body to enjoy life while he's still breathing...
What seems only a few minutes later from his perspective, Ophidian wakes up on earth - in his sister's body. Turns out the Torellia disaster has caused quite a stir in the AI rights community! A copy of his data was sent back to Earth to bear witness for a trial, but shenanigans happened and now there's two copies of him - one here, one on Mars. Petra helps the new copy cope as he gets ready to live life as something- no, someone- new.
Appearances by the cast Inside the Quest. Characters swapped appearances pretty frequently between questions.